Public Discourse Surrounding Conceptions Of Sustainability Definitions And How That Impedes The Development Of A Sustainable Society

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Public Discourse Surrounding Conceptions of Sustainability Definitions and how that Impedes the Development of a Sustainable Society Nicholas Dawson 9/14/2015 University of Southern Queensland Student Number: W0025726 The definition of sustainability varies widely depending on the context in which the concept of sustainability is used. As Herman Daly (1996) put it, “Sustainable development is a term that everyone likes, but nobody is sure of what it means. The term rose to the prominence of a mantra after the publication of the UN sponsored Brundtland Commission report entitled, Our Common Future.” The Brudndtland Commision (1987) that Daly was referring to defined the term as “development that meets the needs of the present…show more content…
The basic definition of economic sustainability is the capability of an economy to support a level of economic production indeterminately. This description does not note the inherent relationship economic sustainability has with the other types mentioned above. Doane and MacGillivray (2001) offer a more detailed approach in its definition of economic sustainability. They note that social and environmental components are intrinsic to economic sustainability and state that it would be more apt to describe economic sustainability as ‘the process of allocating and protecting scarce resources, while ensuring positive social and environmental outcomes’. Social sustainability is a difficult type of sustainability to measure and describe as its indicators vary from one cultural group to the next. It is a weak but nonetheless essential component of the sustainability system. Mackenzie (2004) would describe social sustainability as ‘a life-enhancing condition within communities, and a process within communities that can achieve that condition’. The Western Australia council of social services offers the following definition, ‘Social sustainability occurs when the formal and informal processes; systems; structures; and relationships actively support the capacity of current and future generations to create healthy and liveable communities. Socially sustainable communities are equitable, diverse, connected and democratic

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